France’s far-right Front National has been plunged into an all-out war between its president, Marine Le Pen, and her father Jean-Marie, after he made comments belittling the Holocaust and defending Philippe Pétain, the leader of France’s Nazi collaborationist Vichy regime in the 1940s.
In an unprecedented attack on her father that marks her first move to cut him out of the party he founded, Marine Le Pen issued a scathing press release warning that the 86-year-old would be prevented from standing in regional elections in the south of France.
“Jean-Marie Le Pen seems to have descended into a strategy somewhere between scorched earth and political suicide,” she said. “His status as honorary president does not give him the right to hijack the Front National with vulgar provocations seemingly designed to damage me, but which unfortunately hit the whole movement.”
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